Royals Hall of Famer George Brett added another chapter to his rollicking legend Wednesday andwell, you decide whether or not that’s a positive thing for the Kansas City sports icon.
Brett berated and threatened — although how serious the threat was is open to question — a persistent and avid autograph collector shortly after arriving at Kansas City International Airport.
A man identified as Brandon Farrens approached Brett, who recognized Farrens and, while signing his name, pointedly told Farrens to stay away from him in the future.
“If I ever see you (expletive) again,” Brett said, “I’m going to shoot your (behind), do you understand?”
Farrens responded by turning on his phone camera, recording the incident and then posting it on YouTube.
The 17-second video, which shows Brett signing the autograph, ends shortly after Farrens calls Brett a “(jerk).”
Farrens later told KCTV-5 that he has sought Brett’s autograph on about 35 occasions, has been successful on about 15 occasions and has sold many of them for a profit.
Ironically, Brett was returning to town to accept an award Wednesday night as the “Outstanding Kansas Citian of the Year” from the Native Sons and Daughters of Greater Kansas City in a gala at Kauffman Stadium. Royals vice president for community affairs and publicity Toby Cook saw Brett at the gala.
“I spoke to George, and he admitted he was tired after flying in from an out-of-town trip,” Cook said. “He regrets the tone of his comments and meant nothing by them other than to ask the individual to leave him alone after relentless requests for multiple autographs. He admits a poor choice of words.
“George has always been very accommodating and engaging in signing autographs at Royals-sponsored fan events, and charity/military initiatives in particular.”
The Royals offered no further official comment.
A search of the social media suggests the public strongly, though not exclusively, supports Brett in the incident. Brett was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1999 after completing a 21-year career with the Royals in 1993. He is still employed by the club as a vice president and spent time last season as an interim hitting coach.